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Setting The Mood With Lighting

Being a successful interior designer is all about understanding your clients motivation for using your services and most importantly getting a real grasp on how they wish to use there new improved space and how they want to feel when they are spending time in there.

Photo Credit- PHOS Architectural Lighting Design

In this blog I want to discuss how the use of lighting should be carefully considered in a home and how different lighting can create different moods.

I find many clients dismiss lighting as just a functional requirement, although lighting is starting to get more aesthetic consideration than it once did I will admit. There aren't many people who miss the opportunity to have some sort of beautiful pendent lighting over their kitchen island these days, such as this stunning long pendent from the Luxury Lighting Boutique, it brings soft furnishing into a traditional functional space.

Not so long ago people by default were just putting standard ceiling spot lights in their kitchen areas, these are still a great functional necessity however in my opinion shouldn't be the extent of your lighting source. The reason why, is because residential kitchens are no longer just a practical room where food is prepared, they are so much more, they have become the hub of the home generally forming part of your entertainment space and somewhere families congregate. Spot lighting can be very clinical and doesn't do much for creating a comfortable relaxed atmosphere, but they do light up the space so we can all see clearly.

Introducing ceiling pendents, floor lamps or clever lighting sources can really give a space a different ambiance altogether.

With so many options available now it is hard to know where to begin, questions to ask yourself are how do you want to feel when your in that space? Then consider when you last felt like that and where were you? What was it about that room or place that gave you that feeling? When you really think about it, I would say alot of the way you felt was down to the lighting. Maybe it wasn't artificial lighting, maybe it was daylight, if this is the case, you would look for white light bulbs, these are brighter and create a more natural daylight effect, all these things should be considered when designing your new room.

Clever light source, soft ambient relaxed atmosphere- Photo credit: Pinterest

The above image is an example of how to subtly set the mood in a room, using clever lighting positioning. This is not being used as a functional light source, you wouldn't use this level of light to read a book for example, but you may want a background glow while watching tv, to provide a warm cosy atmosphere. The choice of shelf lighting has been chosen carefully even to the type of hue the light will provide when on, opting for a warm colour that compliments the calming colour palette.

Lighting can enhance or reduce your mood, along with selecting amazing furniture items and a nice decor, lighting should be chosen wisely. Just using a warm or cool hue light bulb, or one with low lumens can make a huge impact on a room in a positive or negative way.

When I think back to when one of the first energy saving light bulbs was introduced and everyone started swapping them around their home. ( depending on your age you may or may not be able to appreciate what I am saying here) When you first switched them on they were so dull, you could barely see, you had to go out the room for 5-10minutes to get it to 'warm up' ie become bright enough to be able to see anything without squinting! Not only did it seem to take what felt like an eternity to 'get light' it was also instantly so depressing!

Aside from your light bulb choices for ambiance, the way the light illuminates the room is important for how you want people to feel when they are in there. Clever lighting is everywhere now in commercial spaces and hospitality, but it is also becoming more common place in homes.

Above is a great example of a multitude of light sources that evoke different feelings while cleverly zoning this open plan residence. From lighting under the bar area to the illumination of the glassed shelving for their spirit collection above. Spot lighting beneath the kitchen wall cabinets, strip pendent drop lights carefully positioned over the wall cupboards and not to ignore the magnificent under-stair strip lighting. Also amongst all this very clever use of lighting, they have not overlooked the need for the functional spot lights, which are also featured in the floor! Very clever effective use of lighting design, by PHOS!

Lastly, in a world where there are so many interior design possibilities, remember your lighting plays a huge part in how a room will not only look aesthetically, but also plays a huge part on your mood, unless your sleeping, a dark room which is lightless is uninviting, equally a space with a single lamp shade and light bulb can also be unimpressive, unless all aspects have been considered, from shade of bulb, direction of light, practicality and ambiance created to include the choice of shade.

Lighting can be the make or break of a well designed room if it is not seriously considered.

Bespoke window seat lighting incorporated within wood panelling, to create an interestingly designed reading corner in a home.

Photo Credit; Pinterest

Thank you for reading my latest blog, I hope it has been inspiring and given you some 'light bulb' moments of how to design your home with more consideration to your lighting choices

Cole & Fox Interior Design

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